Raising chickens in the city is tons of fun but it certainly comes with challenges. We believe these urban chicken coop supplies are must haves!
We raised city chickens for six years, and there were so many things I wished someone had told me about chickens before they caused us problems.
One of things I wish I knew, was what supplies I’d truly need, and what I really could do away with. That was something that only came from experience, but now I can pass that on to you!
6 Must-Have Urban Chicken Coop Supplies
Litter/bedding for the coop and run
That’s right, you’re going to need to spend your hard earned cash on a substance for the purpose of a landing mat for chicken poop.
Many folks in the country use straw as litter in the coop. Straw is usually inexpensive (or free) and a lot easier to come by in rural areas.
The story may be a bit different in your urban neighborhood. It is possible to find free litter materials in some cities, but you may have to go searching for it.
In autumn we use fallen leaves mulched in the lawn mower as litter in the coop. Many cities also provide free mulch and other sorts of natural items as part of city wide recycling programs.
Looking into these could save you some money!
If bedding can’t be found for free in your city, a trip to a farm store might be in order so you can stock up on bales of straw or pine shavings.
Feeder & Fount
Cheap ones will break within a few months, leaving you to go out and purchase another. Bigger is also generally better when purchasing a feeder and fount. The less you have to fill them up and worry about the chickens running out, the better off you’ll be.
The Water heater base for the water fount has been a life saver for us in the frigid and long winters of upstate New York. We went years without it, going out to the coop four to six times per day to switch out frozen water founts for fresh ones, only to find a new layer of ice on the new ones an hour later.
This is an especially good buy for folks that are away at work for most of the day and can’t get home to check on chicken water.
Chickens need access to fresh water at all times of the day, and as the water freezes in the bottom of the fount within two hours, that equals a lot of extra work on your part.
I’m telling you, the base heater saved my sanity, and the health and well being of my winter birds.
Basic First Aid Supplies
Just like any animals, chickens do occasionally get hurt and need first aid supplies. We’ve only needed these a few times within our time of raising chickens, but boy was I glad to have them on hand when needed! It’s very smart to put together a chicken first aid kit right off the bat, so you’re ready in case of emergency. Here are a few things that would be smart to have on hand.
Neosporin: A must have in our first aid kit. We buy the type without pain killer and apply it to the occasional wound on our birds. It promotes fast healing and is totally safe.
Vetericyn Wound Spray: This spray is wonderful for treating wounds. It’s safe and non-toxic, and works great to clean and promote healing.
Blu-Kote: Chickens are attracted to the color red and will peck at an open wound for this reason. Blu-kote is germicidal and fungicidal, so it helps to heal wounds while covering them with blue dye to keep other chickens from pecking at them.
Vet Wrap: This sticky medical tape has helped us out so many times to bandage wounds and correct crooked toes. It’s really a must have!
Small animal cage
This may seem like a random thing to add the list, but we have used it so often that it’s on our must have list now.
When raising chickens, you’ll always need a place to keep one or more birds in seclusion. A Rabbit Cage is great for secluding birds because it’s small and easily transportable, so it can be stored when it’s not in use and get set up quickly when needed.
Over the years we’ve used a Rabbit Cage to house sick or injured chickens, as a brooder for new baby chicks, to quarantine new chickens before adding them to the flock, and to house broody hens with their newly hatched chicks. We’ve been pulling it out of our basement at least every two months since our chickens arrived.
Pest Control Traps
It’s no secret that livestock attract pests, and the ring leaders in the pest world are flies.
Rats and mice are the second most common pests you’ll deal with when raising chickens in the city. They’re no stranger to urban, suburban, and rural chicken coops, as there’s plenty of tasty chicken feed!
Now that you know all of the urban chicken coop supplies you need for your flock, it’s time to actually go out and get some! Don’t miss our post on where to buy chickens before you shop!